This is an age of globalization, and businesses are seeking to move into an international scale. With access to a global talent pool, unexpected doors are being opened, and creativity and innovation are promoted within companies at the highest level. The question now is, how can business professionals who live all over the world work together on a daily basis without suffering the cost of long distance charges and poor channels of communication? Allow me to introduce you to a communication key to globalizing talent and growing businesses with ease, known as Skype.
An Interpersonal Beginning
Skype was founded in 2003 by software developers Niklas Zennström and Dane Janus Friis. A currently well-known software, Skype is a telecommunications app that allows millions of users across the world to partake in text, voice, and video chats from an array of devices including computers, tablets, smartphones and other mobile devices.
Skype was not always at the forefront of communication as it is today. Before Skype became a leader for international business communication, companies had to turn to instant messaging through applications such as MSN Messenger and American Online (AOL) Instant Messenger. These provided mainly text chat options and greatly limited the amount of open communication between chatters. In 2005, Skype was purchased by eBay and was initially used as a means of communication for transactions between buyers and sellers. Ownership exchanged hands again in 2011 when top-dog company Microsoft acquired Skype for $8.5 million dollars.
Since taken over by Microsoft, Skype has really expanded, with a startling number of new account growths, from 196 million to 300 million. According to TechCrunch, in the year 2012, Skype had 45.5 million accounts being used simultaneously. The high user traffic encouraged Microsoft to further evolve Skype, to include new features such as free group calling, real-time screen sharing, interactive whiteboard sharing, SMS / texting, document exchanging, a translator, and more! Microsoft’s bold move to buy Skype was to increase their role within the worlds of communication, information, and even entertainment by allowing people to connect from anywhere around the world; the evolution of Skype since their buyout has indicated they intend to continue doing just that.
Direct Communication Builds Relationships
Skype now has over 663 million users and is a top provider for communication platforms. A large contributing factor to its growth has been the business functionalities that were added over the past few years. Through Skype, business professionals and clients have found great alternative to other expensive conference call or video options. Signing up and getting started with Skype is free, so companies can test it out without any investments. All calls and chats to other Skype users are free, which is great for businesses looking for a daily communication tool. While there are costs for certain enhanced features, such as adding a mobile or landline of your choice to the chat rooms and call forwarding, the charges are a surprisingly low rate, especially for international calls.
Skype has become one of the best online meeting tools available. Using even just the free tools Skype provides to its users, professionals are able to build stronger relationships with their international co-workers and clientele. In this era dominated by text chat, the act of an actual voice call has become highly underrated. You should never underestimate the power and importance of real-time verbal communication for creating long-lasting ties and better understanding. And for those times when text chat is more appropriate, Skype is the perfect place for that too! You can have a one on one conversation, or a conference call with 30+ people all working remotely. Your options are limited only by your imagination (and access to the internet of course)!
Another great component of Skype is the flexibility it offers. Engineers in the tech. world have spent a lot of time and energy into moving from computers that relied on connections to both power outlets and Ethernet cables. Thanks to new and improved laptop battery life, smartphone and tablet users can easily connect on Skype from anywhere with Internet access, an incredibly helpful tool for those on the go. The ability to communicate with those around the world from multiple devices makes it a very handy solution for staying in touch.
The Outsourcing World Online
For outsourcing companies such as Allshore, direct communication via Skype has provided the pillars needed to keep our business alive and thriving. This means of direct and instantaneous communication is one of the resolutions to people still concerned about hiring outsourced employees. It is true that with outsourcing comes a distinct set of challenges such as properly screening and choosing competent programmers, assuring quality work, and even basic communication. But with a strong communication system such as Skype, most reasons people had for not outsourcing become irrelevant. Skype can be used for conducting interviews, through forms of text, voice, and even video chats. A recruiter can hold a long distance interview, while making it seem as though both parties are sitting in the same room! With such direct access to their developers, Skype helps clients easily stay on top of all their projects and progress.
Where ever your HQ may be, in this increasingly globalized world, direct communication is still key and will yield results. Make sure your company sets employees up for success by utilizing the tools today’s technology has brought us!